Stonehenge and its Replicas
Did you know that there are several Stonehenge replicas! I have visited one in Washington State, and one in Western Australia. I visited the original in England, years ago, and by viewing these replicas it is nice to see what the original probably looked like.
On a lonely bluff overlooking the Columbia River and the town of Maryhill, Washington, is a full-size replica Stonehenge. An almost identical copy of the more famous English Stonehenge, it was built by Sam Hill, a road builder, as a memorial to those who died in World War I. Dedicated in 1918, the memorial wasn’t completed until 1930. Hill passed away soon after he finally saw his masterpiece completed. He was buried at the base of the bluff; but, because he wished to be left alone, there is no easy path to his resting place. Pictures of this Stonehenge will follow;
The project began when Hill was mistakenly informed that the original Stonehenge had been used as a sacrificial site. He thus constructed his replica as a reminder that “humanity is still being sacrificed to the god of war.
The dedication plaque on this American Stonehenge reads:
“In memory of the soldiers of Klickitat County who gave their lives in defense of their country. This monument is erected in the hope that others inspired by the example of their valor and their heroism may share in that love of liberty and burn with that fire of patriotism which death can alone quench.”
Stonehenge Replica in Australia
Esperance Stonehenge has been constructed on the South Coast of Western Australia.
There are thought to be 66 large, permanent replicas of Stonehenge throughout the world.
It is a full size replica of the original “Stonehenge” in the UK, as it would have looked around 1950BC.
137 Stones of Esperance Pink Granite quarried adjacent to the Beale’s property, in Esperance, Western Australia.
The 10 Trilithon Stones in a horseshoe pattern weigh between 28-50 tonnes each, standing with the 18 tonne lintels to a height of 8 metres.
Inside the Trilithon Horseshoe stands another Horseshoe of 19 Blue Stones.
The Trilithon Stones are surrounded by a circle of 30 Sarsen Stones weighing 28 tonnes each and standing almost 5 metres high including the 7 tonne lintels on top.
Positioned between the Sarsen Circle and the Trilithon Stones is a full circle of 40 smaller stones, referred to as the Bluestone Circle.
The Altar Stone weighs 9 tonne and lies in front of the tallest Trilithon Stones.
The structure is aligned with the Summer Solstice – Sunrise – Esperance WA. The Station Stones are positioned on this line to allow the suns rays to pass through to the Altar. The Summer Solstice is the longest day of the year (22nd December). The sunset on the Winter Solstice is (June 21st – the shortest day of the year). This is the same line as the Summer Solstice Sunrise.
Kangaroo Island; A descriptive name for an Island, with little question about the driving precautions: DDD Don’t drive Dawn or Dusk.
Yes there are kangaroos on the island, but other wildlife abounds, and remarkable rock formations to view to mention just a little to captivate one on a visit to the island.
We rented a car–no we didn’t drive at dawn, and returned the car before dusk. We did see a car /kangaroo accident on the road though, and a young women calmly calling the patrol, who waved saying she didn’t need our help.
We had a enjoyable time driving around the island with most of our time spent at Flinders Chase National Park hiking around it’s Remarkable Rocks, Admirals Arch, a Lighthouse, and watching lots of New Zealand fur seals at play on the rocks and in the Tasman Sea. The Cape du Couedic Lighthouse built in 1909 is nearby, commanding an amazing view of a pair of coastlines – the western coastline extending from Cape Borda in the north and the southern coastline extending from Cape Willoughby in the east. It sits on a narrow promontory at the most south westerly point of the Kangaroo Island coast and had to be moved further inland years ago to keep it from being flooded.
Our partial wildlife citing included a wild Emu, numerous birds, an iguana identified as Rosenberg’s, the only species of goanna on Kangaroo Island, the island’s largest natural predator. Numerous fur seals in the rocky areas, and seals on the sand on Seal Beach as well as bones from a beached whale.
“Kangaroo Island is one of South Australia’s most popular tourist attractions, attracting over 140,000 visitors each year, with international visitors, primarily from Europe, accounting for more than 25% of these visits.Some of the most popular tourist spots are:
Seal Bay with ranger guided walks among basking Australian sea lions.
Flinders Chase National Park which includes Remarkable Rocks, Admiral’s Arch, lighthouses at Cape Borda and Cape du Couedic, and multiple walking trails and camping areas.”
Kangaroo Island is a true wildlife sanctuary. Owing to its isolation from the mainland, the Island has suffered less from the impact of European settlement and retains more than half of its native ‘old-growth’ vegetation – a vast area of some 2,250 square kilometres. Similarly, the Island has been spared the damage done by foxes and rabbits, ensuring the integrity of native bushland. Result? Animal and bird populations have thrived. Today, more than one-third of the Island is declared Conservation or National Park and it has five significant Wilderness Protection Areas. So Kangaroo Island continues to be a special and protected place. Enter and be amazed…
Yanchep National Park
The Port for Perth is Fremantle; Lots of interesting things to see in the both Fremantle and Perth as reported in the previous
Post. Perth has a very interesting Bell tower, and a beautiful Park on a hill. Our favorite place to visit was nearby
Yanchep National Park.
Yanchep National Park is home to western grey kangaroos which can be seen in abundance early and late in the day. At other times they shelter from the sun so you might be lucky enough to see them resting in shady areas. – See more at: http://parks.dpaw.wa.gov.au/yanchep#sthash.XwLVgABD.dpuf
Stroll along the 240-metre koala boardwalk to view one of Australia’s favorite native animals in a natural environment and learn more about these fascinating creatures. – See more at: http://parks.dpaw.wa.gov.au/yanchep#sthash.XwLVgABD.dpuf
More than 400 caves have been recorded in the park, and there are many ways you can enjoy them. Crystal Cave, Adventure Caving, Cabaret Cave each offer contrasting experiences. – See more at: http://parks.dpaw.wa.gov.au/yanchep#sthash.XwLVgABD.dpuf
We visited Crystal Cave.
The flies were a constant presence in our faces and the fly netting masks were a great buy!
The next stop on the Circumnavigation of Australia;
Fremantle is a city in Western Australia, located at the mouth of the Swan River. Fremantle Harbour serves as the port of Perth, the state capital. Fremantle was the first area settled by the Swan River colonists in 1829.
Perth is the capital and largest city of the Australian state of Western Australia. It is the fourth most populous city in Australia, with an estimated population of 1.97 million living in Greater Perth. Wikipedia
We were able to spend three days in this area; first visit was to Fremantle and their UNESCO Prison.
Fremantle Prison is a former Australian prison in Western Australia. The 15-acre site includes the prison, gatehouse, perimeter walls, cottages, tunnels, and prisoner art. The prison was one of 11 former convict sites in Australia inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2010 as the Australian Convict Sites.
The prison also called Fremantle Goal, was built by convict labour in the 1850s, and transferred to the colonial government in 1886 for use as a gaol for locally-sentenced prisoners. It closed as a prison in 1991 and reopened as a historic site, designated as UNESCO site in 2010. It is now a public museum, managed by the Government of Western Australia with daily and nightly tours being operated. Some tours include information about the possible existence of ghosts within the prison. There are also tours of the flooded tunnels and aqueducts under the prison.
Darwin Australia: the next stop on the Circumnavigation of Australia
Darwin is the capital city of the Northern Territory, Australia. Situated on the Timor Sea. A very popular tour out of Darwin is on the Adelaide River to see the Jumping Saltwater Crocodiles. They really aren’t “salt” water crocs as they live in fresh water of the Adelaide River, but they do jump for their food, whether from the cruise boats or in nature. The Whistling Kites and Sea Eagles are often seen when the cruise boats are out to view and feed the crocs in hopes that they will also get some food that the crocs leave behind.
In some areas the crocs become a danger for people, and every year a few people are killed by them.
Mushrooms and Tree Lizard
Near Cairns Australia we took a hike in a Rainforest. On the way to view the Josephine waterfall we spied these mushrooms, and the very interesting little tree lizard. This was the first time I had ever seen a blue mushroom. After I “Googled” blue mushroom I found out there are several blue mushrooms!
More pictures from Townsville. After we left the Billabong Sanctuary we drove back to Townsville and went to the top of Mt Spec. The views of Townsville and the surrounding area including Magnetic Island, were wonderful. Beautiful flowers abound, as well as great beaches and cute children.
When we sailed up the Brisbane River into Brisbane we were met by this little group of Musicians. So nice to be welcomed!
Brisbane is a beautiful city. We journeyed by water taxi from our ship up the Brisbane River beyond the South Bank Museum area and viewed downtown, beautiful homes, recreation areas, and other interesting sites along the River. The exit from the river at the South Bank area featured a beautiful array of multicolored Bougainvillea and walk- way of tropical plants. The South Bank Park area is a beautiful in which to stroll. We visited the Aboriginal Museum and walked through the library. The buildings are open air, and very inviting. All over the city the bougainvillea were proudly displaying their many colors and in the Park they are growing in a beautiful archway. Beautiful birds could be see and heard all around. One interesting bird that we saw all over South Bank and at the Brisbane Museum trying to eat food off picnic tables is a type of Australian White Ibis, a large pest to shoo away from your picnic table.
The Holland American Circumnavigation of Australia started in Sydney, followed by Brisbane, Hamilton Island, Townsville then Cairns, and that is just one side of Australia! The Great Barrier Reef is the next wonderful area to visit and view.
Cruising into Sydney as the sun rose brought out all the cameras on board ship and we watched and recorded the sun rise on the Sydney Opera House, and the Sydney Harbor Bridge, two of the most iconic structures on the planet.
It was October which is Spring in the Southern Hemisphere. The beautiful purple Jacaranda mimosifolia blooming in great profusion all along the walkway in the Rocks area of Sydney add more color to this historic area. We wondered around the Rocks area and climbed up to observatory hill after having an $8 cup of coffee. Yes everything is very expensive in Australia, especially in Sydney!
Click on the pictures to enlarge them
Known as the Harbor City, Sydney is the largest, oldest and most cosmopolitan city in Australia with an enviable reputation as one of the world’s most beautiful and livable cities in the word, Brimming with history nature, culture, art, fashion, cuisine, and design, it is set next to miles of ocean coastline and sandy surf beaches. Recent immigration trends have led to the city’s reputation as one of the most culturally and ethnically diverse cities in Australia and the world.
The history of Sydney and the convicts.
The settlement of Sydney began its life as a penal colony, with a total of 568 male and 191 female prisoner convicts with 13 children, 206 marines with 26 wives and 13 children, and 20 officials having made the voyage.
Their earliest huts were composed of cabbage-tree palm, while the convicts were housed in huts made of boards wattled with slender twigs and plastered with clay. By 1790, however, there were 40 convicts employed making bricks and tiles, 50 brickie labourers, and 4 stonemasons.
The total convict population that year was 730 persons, with 413 under medical treatment. In fact free settlers did not begin arriving until 1793. See The Rocks, for more history on these early colonial days.
Transportation of convicts to New South Wales (NSW) was finally abolished in 1840 and shortly afterwards, in 1842, Sydney was declared a city. The population grew rapidly during this period, helped by the discovery of gold and the gold rush of 1850 – one year after the Californian gold rush of 1849. Australia received many American and Chinese immigrants at the same time.
In 1901 the six British colonies in Australia formed a federation to become the Commonwealth of Australia. This marks the period of the modern country. Sydney continued to grow and by 1925 became a metropolis of 1 million people. This grew to 2 million by 1963.
Today Sydney has diverse demographics with people from over one hundred countries contributing to its population of over 4 million.
Big Bird–No not the yellow big bird from Sesame Street, but the big black bird from Queenlands Australia. The Casuarius casuarius or cassowary for short. The southern cassowary is a fruit eater that is very important to the Australian rain forests as it spreads the seeds of the fruit it eats throughout the forest. They are large flightless birds, the females can weigh up to 160 pounds, and have a larger hornlike casque than does her mate.The males are smaller than the females and they are the ones who raise the chicks. Both males and females have glossy black feathers, with scaly legs
Different birds have different length of wattles, the beautiful red folds of skin that hang down in front of the neck. There are just three toes on their feet, and on the inside of each foot is a spike.
These particular cassowaries I photographed in a Bird Park in Bali Indonesia. For more information on the birds I refer you to a recent article in the September 2013 issue of the National Geographic, or Google it!